#8: 1720 to 1761: The South Sea Bubble crisis; Jacobite rebellion
The Maiden covers a period of forty years, from the South Sea Bubble crisis, up through the Jacobite rebellion and beyond. Jemmy Morland is the master of Morland Place, married off to the Lady Mary, even though his heart is elsewhere. Later, his daughter Jemima marries, while Marie-Louise, the Countess of Strathord and the daughter of royalty, entertains delusions of grandeur.
It’s always amazing to me how the Morland family can be on the losing side of history, and yet always emerge victorious—I’ve always found the family’s ability to survive anything to be really appealing. This time, the focus is more on the family’s story, though history intervenes when certain members of the family becomes embroiled with the Jacobite cause. However, things can become a bit confusing, especially with the difference between the “Morland Place” Morlands, and the “Shawes” Morlands (as with the other books in the series, there’s a family tree in the beginning of the book, and I found myself turning back to it often). It’s always interesting, too, how strong the Morland women tend to be, and I look forward to reading more about Jemima in later books in the series. In all, this is a very strong addition to the Morland Dynasty saga.